IT horror stories are perfect for Halloween and Cybersecurity Awareness month. If you are the owner of a company or in the IT field, you all have your own similar scary tales to tell.
1. In the early '90's, an IT engineer was finishing up a marathon weekend roll-out. Final testing had been done and user training was set for Monday. The company had been informed that all employees would need to choose new passwords and a receptionist had sent out an alert to all staff. As the install team was leaving, the engineer happened by a company billboard and saw, out of the corner of his eye, a neatly printed list of every user's password posted for all to see! The receptionist had requested that each employee email their passwords so that she could handle the inevitable forgotten password requests and she also thought it would be helpful to post the list in a public place so employees could look up their own passwords. Definitely a trick for the company and a treat for potential hackers.
2. At 6pm on a Tuesday evening an IT team received a warning that one of their customer's servers had a low battery and it subsequently crashed a short time later. As they were trying to remotely diagnose the problem, the server rebooted and worked perfectly. The same thing happened again that Thursday at 6pm. The team visited the company and replaced the battery and the UPS gear. Unfortunately the same incident repeated itself every Tuesday and Thursday at 6pm, but, according to the customer there was no one working on the server or in the office at that time of day. There was no choice except for the team to camp out at their client's company the following Tuesday at 6pm. Promptly at that time, the office cleaning crew arrived, unplugged the server to vacuum around it and plugged it back in several minutes later. Who knew that a "Do Not Unplug" sign was the solution!
3. This last story is short and sweet and comes from an IT help desk technician. He had just walked into an office when one of the exasperated employees said, "At last! It's been so long! I pressed the F1 (help button) over two hours ago!!"
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